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Metro starts to build "roomier" new warehouse


Metro Inc. yesterday began construction on a new warehouse in an industrial park in Laval that will distribute produce and dairy products.

The warehouse, which is being built at a cost of $50 million, is slated to open in March 2013.

Eric La Fléche, Metro’s president, said the warehouse will allow the grocer to improve quality, variety and freshness of produce and dairy products while boosting distribution efficiencies.

The warehouse replaces an existing but smaller distribution centre on Pierre-de-Coubertin Avenue in Montreal’s east end.

Due to its bigger size, the new warehouse will be able to store a larger amount of produce, especially certified organic and exotic products, plus a wider variety of Quebec produce and dairy items.

“It’s part of our 'Freshness' project, which is intended to increase customer satisfaction,” La Fleche said on Wednesday, the same day Metro held a groundbreaking ceremony.

La Fléche (left in photo above) was accompanied by Gilles Vaillancourt, mayor of Laval, and Christian Bourbonnière, senior vice-president of Metro’s Quebec division.

The warehouse takes up 241,000 square feet on land that encompasses 1.5 million sq. ft. It will employ about 250 people.

It is located close to two main Quebec highways: Highways 25 and 440.

The design incorporates several environmental features, including a white roof to reduce heat, LED lighting, and lighting presence sensors indoors to cut electricity consumption.

The warehouse also uses a C02 refrigeration system. Heat coming off that system's compressors will be warm offices and other parts of the building.

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